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December 28, 2017
 
--by Rev. Vartkes M. Kassouni
 
The story of Armenian Presbyterians in America is closely intertwined with the story of Armenians and their immigration to the United States. It is distinctly so in California, where the first Armenian immigrants began to settle in Fresno in the mid-1880s. 
 
The oldest Armenian church of any denomination in California was organized in 1897 as the First Armenian Presbyterian Church. Its first pastor was a former American missionary to Armenia, Rev. Lysander Burbank, who had...
July 27, 2017

In the first week of June, PHS Records Archivist David Staniunas went on a three-city tour of Oklahoma, attending the tri-presbytery gathering in Enid; speaking at Westminster Presbyterian Church, Oklahoma City; and spending a day at First Presbyterian Church, Tulsa. 

I had come packing video from PHS's collections. First, of the 1928 General Assembly in Tulsa, which featured footage of First Tulsa's since-destroyed Greek Revival building, and of the Art Deco Boston Avenue United Methodist Church, then under construction. Second, footage from the...

April 7, 2017

--By Christopher D. George

Little did the elders and members of the Second United Presbyterian Church of Allegheny City, PA, know what they were getting themselves into during the summer of 1860. Being “destitute of a fixed Pastor,” a call was made for Rev. John Barr Clark, then a little-known minister in Canonsburg, PA, to lead the church and take “charge of our souls.” Soon after Rev. Clark accepted this...

March 23, 2017

--by Kenneth J. Ross

Philadelphia’s importance as a center of African American history rests in part on its role as the birthplace of the nation’s first black churches. It was the churches which gave shape and protection to the emerging African American community in the urban North—educating their young, disciplining their members, and providing young and old with material support, moral guidance, and spiritual hope. Philadelphia saw both the...

January 12, 2017

In different points in its life, the Philadelphia congregation known as Beacon has been a Sunday school mission, a nesting congregation, a mother church with its own college, a church in schism, and a new church development. A persistent thread in the fabric of Philadelphia's Kensington neighborhood, its population waxed and waned by turns, for 146 years.

Beacon began life in 1871 as a Sunday school mission of the First Presbyterian Church of Kensington. In 1872, the growing church bought a parcel of land from...

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